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Jurors Award Lawyer and Husband Nearly 10 Times the Requested Amount in Internet Defamation Case

Posted Mar 13, 2012 8:51 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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Georgia jurors in an Internet defamation case last month ignored a request to award $48,000 each to a lawyer and her husband. Instead, they awarded a total of $900,000 in damages.

The plaintiffs, lawyer Jana Tabor and construction company owner John Tabor, had alleged they were defamed through media and Internet posts, according to the Daily Report. The defendant, Robyn McKinney, was accused of claiming the Tabors were responsible for the actions of a convicted murderer who had at one time worked for John Tabor’s company.

It’s not the first time that McKinney was a defendant in a suit involving the Tabors. John Tabor’s company had previously sued McKinney as part of a fee dispute for work done on McKinney’s home. Jana Tabor had represented the company. The Tabors had contended McKinney’s defamatory comments were retaliation for the prior suit.

The $900,000 verdict in Gwinnett County is one of three six-figure Georgia verdicts awarded for Internet defamation in the last 15 months, the story says. Lawyers for the plaintiffs in all three cases say the verdicts are uncollectable because the defendants have no assets.

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